It's all over the news. The Net Neutrality Laws have been repealed by the Federal Communications Commission. We all know that this poses a threat to open internet and freedom of speech online, but the question that keeps circulating in my mind is... will net neutrality affect bitcoin?
1. Will net Neutrality Affect Your Bitcoin Wallet and Portfolio?
When the FCC repealed the Net Neutrality laws, this granted internet service providers power to pick and choose which websites, apps, news, and even emails you can have access to. Do you like to use Google Search? Too bad! You might have Verizon Wireless as your internet or phone data provider, and Verizon owns large shares of Yahoo which they might only allow their Verizon customers to use.
I for one have invested in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin all using my mobile phone via cryptocurrency wallets that I opened on brokerage apps. What if Verizon (my internet provider) gets large sums of money from Wells Fargo Bank (cryptocurrency's competitor, which stands to be put out of business by blockchain technology)? Wells Fargo's website will be put at the top of the list as far as speed and accessibility goes, but Verizon might even block cryptocurrency exchange apps altogether!
DON'T PANIC JUST YET! Just because internet providers have the ability to block the use of apps and websites like Coinbase, doesn't mean that you will lose your bitcoin wallet. Even if your phone can't use the app, the app still exists. Your account still exists. You will still have a username and password that you can use to access your wallet, buy and sell cryptocurrency, and monitor your portfolio. You might just have to use a public library's computer to do it.
The fact is, we don't know all the facts. We don't know if internet providers will take advantage of the absence of net neutrality to just charge you more per month to access certain websites and apps, or if they will start forging partnerships to eliminate access to competitors all together. Either way, there will be a way to get onto these sites regardless of what companies restrict.
2. How will Net Neutrality Affect the Blockchain?
Blockchain, by design, is a decentralized network of computers keeping and checking records of itself. That is why you can't forge Bitcoin like you can the US Dollar, at any time every computer in a blockchain network knows exactly where each and every bitcoin is. So if a "bitcoin" just shows up out of nowhere, the blockchain will nullify it because it knows that it is not a part of the system.
Since blockchain isn't just one website, isn't just one application in the Google Play Store, isn't just one entity keeping track of all the information inside a network, internet providers would find it nearly impossible to completely restrict access to blockchain.
One thing we have to remember throughout this entire change, is that repealing the Net Neutrality Laws only affects people using the internet in the United States. Blockchain is a global enterprise. Blockchain is a worldwide revolution that has the potential to impact every person on our planet.
Even if we assumed the worst for blockchain in the United States, blockchain will continue to thrive and grow in both power and in value as the rest of the world continues to innovate and revolutionize the open internet. The battle for equality on the internet isn't over. You can make a difference by contacting your state's government representatives and letting them know your opposition to repealing Net Neutrality and limiting access to the internet. We support Net Neutrality, so we have created a list where you can find your local representatives and all their contact information here.
3. How YOU can Help
If you support the innovation of blockchain, the protection of Net Neutrality, and the survival of bitcoin, please share this article on social media. The more people who understand these issues and their impact, the more support we can muster to protect the advancement of technology and insure the innovation of the future.
Thanks for reading!
Chief Growth Officer, Online Growth Systems